Course Title: Refine writing and editing techniques - Novel

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2012

Course Code: COMM5410

Course Title: Refine writing and editing techniques - Novel

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C5181 - Diploma of Professional Writing and Editing

Course Contact : Brendan Lee

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4368

Course Contact Email:brendan.lee@rmit.edu.au


Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: Dr Olga Lorenzo

Telephone: 9925 4058

Email: olga.lorenzo@rmit.edu.au

Nominal Hours: 85

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

Enrolment into this course at RMIT requires the completion of Develop Writing and Editing Skills. Produce Writings – Novel or Writing for YA.

The competency, Refine Writing & Editing Techniques -- Novel is taught and assessed alongside the following competencies:
CUVCOR04A - Originate concept for own work and conduct critical discourse
CUVCOR13A - Research and critically analyse history and theory to inform artistic practice
CUECOR01B - Manage own work and learning
CUSADM03A - Manage a project
CUVDES05A - Interpret and respond to a brief
CUSRAD02A - Conduct research

Through the development of these competencies, you gain the skills needed to manage your work and learning while responding to a project brief. You research the work of other writers and publishers and apply your findings to your own project through the development of a concept into a written work.

Course Description

This unit covers the knowledge and skills required to research and experiment with writing and editing techniques while working on a novel. The emphasis in this course is to extend a novel in progress, concentrating on further development of plot, themes, characterisation and dialogue. 


National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

VBP553 Refine writing and editing techniques - Novel

Element:

1. Inform work through experimentation with writing techniques and media   

Performance Criteria:

1.1 The potential for new approaches to writing based on the capabilities of techniques already used are evaluated
1.2 New techniques are selected, adapted and introduced for the achievement of different effects
1.3 The capabilities of writing techniques are extended through experimentation to inform practice
1.4 Relevant ideas and approaches from other practitioners are researched, adapted and used with consideration of intellectual property, moral rights and copyright requirements

Element:

2. Develop and refine conceptual vision for writings

Performance Criteria:

2.1A conceptual vision for writings are developed based on a knowledge and understanding of different writing techniques
2.2The criteria for selecting techniques are considered based on results of experimentation
2.3The criteria which are most likely to facilitate the achievement of the conceptual vision are established
2.4The approach to work which meets established criteria is selected
2.5The conceptual vision is refined based on on-going experimentation and analysis of writing techniques

Element:

3. Determine and organise resource requirements for work

Performance Criteria:

3.1The specific resource requirements which arise from the use of techniques and experimental approaches are assessed
3.2Potential sources are researched and accessed
3.3Constraints that may impact on the development of work are evaluated

Element:

4. Plan the writing

Performance Criteria:

4.1The writing task is planned to reflect the scope, structure and content of the work and to meet agreed timelines
4.2Ideas are organised and developed into an ordered sequence of scenes
4.3All resources required to deliver the writing task are organised
4.4A timeline for the completion of the writing task that reflects the critical milestones is determined

Element:

5. Realise writings                              

Performance Criteria:

5.1Writings are realised using techniques and media selected from research and experimentation to meet the conceptual vision
5.2The potential for changes in the use of techniques are evaluated and responded to
5.3The conceptual vision is refined based on on-going experiences with the production of writings
5.4Issues of design and presentation of writings are considered and appropriate actions taken


Learning Outcomes


On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to refine the concept of a novel and revise an early draft, moving the novel towards completion. You will also be able to refine a synopsis.  


Details of Learning Activities

In this course, you learn through:
1. In-class activities:

  • lectures/informal discussions of novel craft
  • teacher directed group activities
  • guest lecturers
  • analysis/critique of student work
  • peer assessment and class presentations
  • group discussions
  • class exercises

2. Out-of-class activities:
  • independent project based work
  • online and other research
  • writing from life
  • reading assignments


Teaching Schedule

Week
Class Content Competency & Elements
Week 1Introductions. Explanation of course structure and
assessment. Discussion of student and teacher expectations.
Writing exercise
 CUSADM03A 1,2 CUVCOR04A 1,2
VBP553 1
Week 2Introduction to the subject, continued. Explanation of the year’s work and assessment. Initial writing exercises.
Texts discussed
 CUVCOR04A – 1,2
CUSADM03A 1,2,3; CUECOR01B – 1,3
CUSRAD02A - 1-4
VBP553 1,2
Week 3Novel Beginnings, reviewed
Workshopping students’ beginnings
Discussion of conventional and non-conventional beginnings
Writing exercises on beginnings
 VBP553 1,2,3;
CUSRAD02A - 1-2
CUSADM03A 1 -4; CUVCOR13A – 1,2
CUVDES05A - 1-5
CUVCOR04A – 1,2
Week 4Voice and Point of View, reviewed
Lesson on point of view and tense in novel writing
Writing exercises experimenting with Point of View
Workshopping students’ work in class
 VBP553 1,2,3;
CUVDES05A -1-5 CUSRAD02A - 1-4
CUECOR01B - 2
CUSADM03A – 1,2
Week 5Voice and Point of View
Discussion of Point of View cont
Writing exercises
Workshopping
Notes for all 3-minute presentations on set texts DUE today Monday Mar 5
VBP553 1,2,3;
Week 6Public holiday  
Week 7Rhythm and Pace
Elements of pace examined, including scenes, summary, stretch, ellipsis
Writing exercises experimenting with rhythm and pace
Presentations by students on set texts exploring elements of craft
Workshopping
 VBP553 1,2,3
Week 8Rhythm and Pace
Writing exercises experimenting with rhythm
Presentations by students on set texts exploring elements of craft
Workshopping
 VBP553 1,2,3;
CUVCOR04A – 1,2,3
CUECOR01B - 3
Week 9Editing, redrafting, revising VBP553 1,2,3;

VBP553 1,2,3;
Week 10Show, don’t Tell
Discussion of “show, don’t tell” as craft
Writing exercises experimenting with “show, don’t tell”
Presentations by students on set texts exploring elements of craft
Workshopping
 CUVCOR04A -1-2
CUVDES05A – 1-5
Week 11Show, don’t Tell, continued
Writing exercises on “show, don’t tell” cont
Presentations by students on set texts discussing elements of craft in novel
Workshopping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUSRAD02A – 1-5CUVCOR13A – 1-3
Week 12Show, don’t Tell, cont.
Class presentations continued
Workshopping, Writing exercises
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR04A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 1-3
Week 13Dialogue
Examination of dialogue and character in classic novels
Writing exercises to do with dialogue
Class presentations
Workshoping
500-word synopsis and 2000-word excerpt DUE TODAY, Monday 12 May
VBP 553 1-4;
CUSRAD02A - 1-4
CUVCOR04A -1-3
Week 14Dialogue, cont
Writing from life
Workshopping
presentations
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR04A – 1,2
Week 15Dialogue
Writing exercises to do with dialogue
Class presentations
Workshoping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR04A – 1,2
VBP553 -1 CUSADM03A - 4
Week 16Characterisation
Examination of character and techniques for developing character
Writing exercises to do with characterisation
Class presentations
Workshoping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUSRAD02A – 1-3 CUVCOR13A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 1-3
Week 17Assessment week -- no classes
  
 Semester 2   
Week 1Review of Semester 1 and introduction to Semester 2 work VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR04A 4
CUSADM03A1-4;
CUECOR01B – 1-3
CUSRAD02A - 1-4
Week 2Place and Atmosphere
Discussion of craft
Class presentations
Writing exercises
Workshopping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUSADM03A1-4;

CUVCOR04A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 1-3;
Week 3Outline and synopsis
Writing exercises
Workshopping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUSADM03A1-4;
Week 4Politics and the Novel
Discussion of craft
Class presentations
Writing exercises
Workshopping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR13A – 1-3
Week 5Presentations on set text
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
Notes for all 3-minute presentations on set texts DUE in class today, Mon July 30
VBP 553 1-4;
CUSRAD02A – 1-2 CUVCOR13A – 1-3
Week 6Presentations on set text
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR04A -1-4
CUECOR01B -3; CUVDES05A – 1-5

Week 7Realism, post-modernism
Discussion of craft
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 CUSADM03A 1,2,3;
VBP 553 1-4;

Week 8Presentations on set text
Form and structure
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 CUSRAD02A – 1-4 CUVCOR13A – 1-3
VBP 553 1-4;
Week 9Presentations on set text
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 CUVCOR13A – 1-3
VBP 553 1-4;
Week 10Metaphor, symbolism , discussion
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 CUSADM03A 1-4
VBP 553 1-4;
Week 11Metaphor, symbolism
Class presentations
Workshopping
Writing exercises
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR13A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 1-3
CUSADM03A 1,2,3;
Week 12Characterisation
Writing exercises to do with characterisation
Class presentations
Workshoping
 VBP 553 1-4;
CUVCOR13A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 1-3
CUSADM03A 1,2,3;
Week 13

Endings; Overview of structure
Workshopping
Writing exercises
500-word synopsis and 2000-word excerpt DUE today, Mon Oct 8
VBP 553 1-4;
CUSADM03A 4
CUVCOR04A 3,4
Week 14The publishing industry VBP553 3
CUSADM03A 2;
CUVCOR04A 3,4
Week 15
Agents and the publishing industry
Writing in the cold – Ted Solotaroff handout
 CUVCOR13A – 1-3
CUECOR01B – 2,3
VBP553 3
CUVCOR04A 3,4
Week 16Holiday  
Week 17Assessment Week -- no classes
  


Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

For Olga Lorenzo:
Semester 1:
Robinson, M., Housekeeping, Faber and Faber
Franzen, J. Freedom

Semester 2:
Strout, Elizabeth, Olive Kitteridge
Hatnett, S., Butterfly.


References

George, E. 2004. Write Away

9780060560423


Other Resources

You will require access to a computer and to the internet


Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is ongoing throughout the semester. Your knowledge and understanding of course content is assessed through participation in class exercises, workshopping, oral presentations and through the application of learned skills and insights to your writing project.


Assessment Tasks

Semester 1

1. Workshopping: Workshop 1,500-word novel extract . This work, or a redrafted version, cannot be assessed again in any other assignment.

Roster will follow roll; if a student has agreed to workshop and is not able to attend, it is up to the student to "swap" with another student.

Photocopies of work to be workshopped need to be arranged or brought to class.

DUE DATE: as rostered by teacher (10%)



2. Presentation: A 3-minute presentation (500-word MAXIMUM) on one of the texts set for Semester 1 on a single aspect of craft or a single writing convention. This work must be submitted with appropriate referencing and bibliography.

Note: this is not a book review, a discussion of the themes of the novel or a recounting of the plot. It is a discussion of only one element of craft. The element may be one covered in the teaching schedule above: for example, pace, dialogue or point of view. The presentation should focus on ’what I learned’ about this element of craft while reading this book. Students should take notes while reading, and may need to do independent research on the element of craft.

Students will hand in presentation notes by the due date and must be ready to do the presentation any time after this as per the teacher’s request and/or roster. Complying with time limit and responding to brief is a vital part of the assessment

DUE DATE: Mon March 5 (10%)

3. Synopsis and Novel Excerpt:  A maximum 500-word synopsis and a 2000-word excerpt of novel edited to publishable standard.

Presentation as per industry requirements:
Single-sided printing                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1-1/2 or double spacing
12-pt type
Numbered pages
Wide margins

1 1/2 to double spacing
Synopsis as per industry requirements

Exact word count to be included

DUE DATE: Mon May 7 (30%)

 

Semester 2

4. Workshopping:  Workshop 1,500-word novel extract. This work, or a redrafted version, cannot be assessed again in any other assignment (i.e No. 6. Novel excerpt and synopsis).

Photocopies of work to be workshopped need to be arranged or brought to class.

Roster will follow roll



DUE DATE: as rostered by teacher (10%)



5. Presentation: A 3-minute presentation (MAXIMUM 500 words) on one of the texts set for Semester 2 on a single aspect of craft or a single writing convention.

Note: this is not a book review, a discussion of the themes of the novel or a recounting of the plot. It is a discussion of only one element of craft. The element may be one covered in the teaching schedule above: for example, pace, dialogue or point of view. The presentation should focus on ’what I learned’ about this element of craft while reading this book. Students should take notes while reading.

Students will hand in presentation notes by the due date and must be ready to do the presentation any time after this as per the teacher’s request and/or roster. Complying with time limit and responding to brief is a vital part of the assessment

DUE DATE: Mon July 30 (10%)


6. Synopsis and Novel Excerpt: A maximum 500-word synopsis and a 2000-word excerpt of novel edited to publishable standard.
Presentation as per industry requirements:
Single-sided printing                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               1-1/2 or double spacing
12-pt type
Numbered pages
Wide margins
Synopsis as per industry requirement 

Exact word count to be included

DUE DATE: Mon October 8 (30%)


To demonstrate competency in this course, you will need to complete these pieces of assessment to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback on all assessment.

For further information on the grading system and criteria used, please refer to the course blackboard site.

Grades used in this unit are as follows:

Grades which apply to curriculum-based courses:
80 – 100% HD High Distinction
70 – 79% DI Distinction
60 – 69% CR Credit
50 – 59% PA Pass
Under 50% NN Fail


Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration.

Other Information

Feedback:
You will receive spoken and/or written feedback on your work

Academic Integrity
Academic Integrity is about the honest presentation of your academic work. Presenting work that fails to acknowledge other people’s work within yours can compromise academic integrity. For further information on academic integrity and plagiarism, please refer to the following URL. http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=kkc202lwe1yv

Late Submissions
All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension.
Please refer to the course blackboard site for information on late submissions and on applying for an extension.

Special Consideration Policy
Please refer to the following URL for information on applying for special consideration:
http://www.rmit.edu.au/browse;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y;STATUS=A;PAGE_AUTHOR=Andrea%20Syers;SECTION=1;



Course Overview: Access Course Overview